Retina MacBook Pro Users Still Complaining of Image Persistence

Back in late June, we reported that some early purchasers of Apple's Retina MacBook Pro were experiencing image persistence or "ghosting" issues in which remnants of previously-displayed windows remain visible on the screen for sometime afterward.

Apple was reportedly replacing the affected machines and DisplayMate's Ray Soneira had indicated that it was likely to be an early production issue, but three months later users are still complaining about the issue. Extensive threads in the MacRumors forums and at Apple Support Communities have been tracking the issue, which preferentially affects displays manufactured by LG. Displays manufactured by Samsung do not generally appear to be suffering from the problem.

retina macbook pro image persistence
Example of image persistence after just 10 minutes on screen

Several of the affected users report being on their third or fourth machine and still receiving units that are affected by the issue. But even as Apple is replacing machines showing image persistence, the company has posted a new support document stating that the phenomenon is normal on the in-plane switching (IPS) displays used in the Retina MacBook Pro and other products.

On an IPS display, when an image such as a login window is left on screen for a long period of time, you may temporarily see a faint remnant of the image even after a new image replaces it. This is referred to as "persistence," "image retention," or "ghosting." This is normal behavior for an IPS display, and the faint image will disappear over time.

You can prevent image persistence by using the display sleep feature to turn off the display when it is not in use. You can also use a screen saver to make sure that a static image isn't on the display for long periods of time. Both of these features are on by default in Mac OS X, but you can adjust the settings as needed.

As noted in our forum thread users can paste the following command into Terminal in order to determine the manufacturer of their displays:

ioreg -lw0 | grep \"EDID\" | sed "/[^<]*</s///" | xxd -p -r | strings -6

Model numbers beginning with "LP" indicate an LG display while model number beginning with "LSN" correspond to Samsung displays. A number of those affected by the issue indicate that it was not necessarily noticeable at first but has seemed to worsen over time, and a checkerboard image posted to our forums can be used to help assess the severity of the problem. Users with significant issues should, however, be able to easily see the image persistence when moving any window away from a contrasting background after even just a few minutes on the screen.

Related Forum: MacBook Pro

Top Rated Comments

jeremy h Avatar
151 months ago
You now actually need to use screen savers again? Who-hoo - back to the 90's... Now, where did I put that floppy disc with the flying toasters on again?
Score: 40 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Primus84 Avatar
151 months ago
And this is why you don't buy Rev. A Apple products.
Score: 32 Votes (Like | Disagree)
deadlystriker Avatar
151 months ago
If ghosting is "normal" then why are they replacing machines?
Score: 27 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Sequin Avatar
151 months ago
That's ridiculous. This shouldn't happen for something so extremely overpriced.
Score: 25 Votes (Like | Disagree)
camnchar Avatar
151 months ago
No ghosting here, Samsung display.

Go ... Samsung?
Score: 21 Votes (Like | Disagree)
raazman Avatar
151 months ago
Oh please, this is nothing new. My 24" iMac from 2009 does the exact same thing.

And you're fine with that, despite paying for it??
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

iOS 18 Siri Integrated Feature

iOS 18 Will Add These New Features to Your iPhone

Friday April 12, 2024 11:11 am PDT by
iOS 18 is expected to be the "biggest" update in the iPhone's history. Below, we recap rumored features and changes for the iPhone. iOS 18 is rumored to include new generative AI features for Siri and many apps, and Apple plans to add RCS support to the Messages app for an improved texting experience between iPhones and Android devices. The update is also expected to introduce a more...
iPhone 16 Camera Lozenge 2 Colors

iPhone 16 Plus Rumored to Come in These 7 Colors

Wednesday April 10, 2024 3:52 am PDT by
Apple's iPhone 16 Plus may come in seven colors that either build upon the existing five colors in the standard iPhone 15 lineup or recast them in a new finish, based on a new rumor out of China. According to the Weibo-based leaker Fixed focus digital, Apple's upcoming larger 6.7-inch iPhone 16 Plus model will come in the following colors, compared to the colors currently available for the...
apple silicon feature joeblue

Macs to Get AI-Focused M4 Chips Starting in Late 2024

Thursday April 11, 2024 10:10 am PDT by
Apple will begin updating its Mac lineup with M4 chips in late 2024, according to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman. The M4 chip will be focused on improving performance for artificial intelligence capabilities. Last year, Apple introduced the M3, M3 Pro, and M3 Max chips all at once in October, so it's possible we could see the M4 lineup come during the same time frame. Gurman says that the entire...
top stories 13apr2024

Top Stories: M4 Mac Roadmap Leaked, New iPads in Second Week of May, and More

Saturday April 13, 2024 6:00 am PDT by
Apple's hardware roadmap was in the news this week, with things hopefully firming up for a launch of updated iPad Pro and iPad Air models next month while we look ahead to the other iPad models and a full lineup of M4-based Macs arriving starting later this year. We also heard some fresh rumors about iOS 18, due to be unveiled at WWDC in a couple of months, while we took a look at how things ...
new best buy blue

Best Buy Opens Up Sitewide Sale With Record Low Prices on M3 MacBook Air, iPad, and Much More

Saturday April 13, 2024 7:41 am PDT by
Best Buy this weekend has a big sale on Apple MacBooks and iPads, including new all-time low prices on the M3 MacBook Air, alongside the best prices we've ever seen on MacBook Pro, iPad, and more. Some of these deals require a My Best Buy Plus or My Best Buy Total membership, which start at $49.99/year. In addition to exclusive access to select discounts, you'll get free 2-day shipping, an...